Introduction

  • Laith A. Jawad
Chapter

Abstract

Dangerous marine fishes have always created a challenge for coastal human societies such as fishing communities. These fishes are typically classified into five main categories, with subdivision of some categories: predators, biting, harmful, venomous, and poisonous. Venomous fishes are those capable of producing venom in specialised tissues or glands that are connected with application structures (e.g., stings), unlike poisonous fishes that usually produce poisons in nonspecialised tissues or accumulate them after ingestion of prey or algae and may be dangerous to people who consume them (Spanier 1987; Russell 1996). The number of attacks, envenomation, and toxication by dangerous fishes has increased in recent years; the increased use of skin and scuba diving as leisure activities has led to an increase in the number of admissions to emergency departments (Atkinson et al. 2006). Yet, very limited research has been done around the world to estimate the magnitude of these injuries inflicted by marine fishes. In countries such as Australia, it was found that fish (including stingrays) constituted the taxonomic group causing the highest rate of injury (62.9%). In the Australian study 8.3% of the cases required hospitalisation, and most of the injuries occurred as a result of sport and leisure activities (65.9%; Taylor et al. 2002). Such a survey has not been applied in many other countries thus far. Such studies will assess the prevalence of injuries caused by dangerous marine fishes along the coastal areas to describe the medical aspects of the injuries in order to identify causes of hazard and recommend prevention strategies.

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© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Laith A. Jawad
    • 1
  1. 1.ManukauNew Zealand

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